Essays on Why Did Most Australian Colonies Develop Protective Tariff Policies Case Study

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The paper "Why Did Most Australian Colonies Develop Protective Tariff Policies" is a perfect example of a macro & microeconomics case study. The difference between free trade and protectionism is clear cut. Free trade appreciates the right of an individual to engage in voluntary dealings in goods and services from within the borders and from without. More importantly, free trade creates jobs by reducing prices. When consumers have more money left in their pockets, then there will be some additional spending, which in turn stimulates production and employment. Moreover, free trade shifts jobs from high relative cost sectors that cannot compete with low relative cost sectors that may be able to compete. If an individual willingly acquires an imported article, then they get a better-quality product and/or may be at a better price.

Free international trade, conveys benefits to all countries and individuals, even enterprises that partake by permitting, internationally, the specialization that transpires in a free economy (Foster 110).   To explain the reason as to why most Australian colonies decided to develop protection tariffs, this paper will try to analyze what these policies asserted and the effects that they carried.

It will try to explain theories like Viner’ s theories and if they really applied or not. The paper analyses the start and the outcome of the protection policies to answer the above question. Issues to be analyzed are such as employment and trade which were some of the major results of the protection policy. We shall be able to witness that as the Protection Tariffs became prevalent the level of industrialization in Australia grew. We shall also witness that as the tariffs grew, then they started creating a burden on the economy and needed to be checked.

But how did the government react to this, and was it successful or not (Murphy 45) Victoria became blatantly protective. They placed high import duties that were placed on a wide range of goods in order to endorse the production of substitutes for importation. The introduction of a protective tariff reveals a change in government intentions away from building the country, supporting the expansion of production of wool, wheat farming and mining, just to lay more emphasis on economic development, while in essence, it is developing manufacturing.

Protective tariffs were first in Victoria and adopted as a way of encouraging budding manufacturing industries (Parkes 33).


1. Cox, Jim. The Concise Guide To Economics By Jim Chap: 19

2. Friedman, Milton. Bright Promises, Dismal Performance, (New York: Harcourt, Brace And Jovanovich, 1983) pp. 357 - 372.

3. Younkins, Edward. Protectionism: A Threat To Individual Rights By Dr. Liberty Free Press November 15, 2000

4. Conlon Roy. 'Protection Of Australian Manufacturing: Past, Present And Future', In Satya Paul (Editor), Trade And Growth New Theory And The Australian experience, allen & unwin, sydney, 1998, p. 226.


6. Tom Conley: The Vulnerable Country: Australia And The Global Economy University Of New South Wales Press Ltd 2009 Pg 94 – 127

7. Linda Richardson: Is knowledge enough? – Realizing The Benefits of Free Trade, Agenda Vol 6, No. 2, 1999, pgs 127 – 140

8. Parkes Hayes (1876), speeches on various occasions connected with the public affairs of N.S.W. 1848 – 1874, George Robertson, Melbourne

9. Murphy, Dennis. Labor in Politics: the state labor parties in australia 1880-1920, University of Queensland Press, St Lucia, Qld, 1975, pp. 26-29

10. Harborne, Tim, “Tariff History of Australia”, University of Sydney, M.Ec, 1927, p. 102n

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